BONG RETURNED is wonderful news for the school. She met with Peter, one of the founders of the Burmese Refugee Project, last week and was so impressed with BRP and the goals of our school that today she said she’d help in January. HURRAH. Even better, we’ve hired her to help us negotiate with the Ministry of Education where she has great contacts. Peter, she and I are going to Mae Hong Son, the province capital of the same name, one day this week to meet with officials.
ONE WEEK TO GO! At the moment we have 5 boys and 2 girls enrolled as paying students and will have 3-4 scholarship students from the Shan refugee community. That’s a credible number of students for our pilot. Chiang Mai Montessori opened with only 4, had 10 for 2nd semester and now, in its second year, has a waiting list.
The school is looking great. Most of the Montessori material is in place. Beth and I have been making loads of materials, especially in English since nearly everything I made at my workshop is in Thai. We’ve had 2-3 volunteers here every afternoon–Peter has recruited them, mostly from Ing Doi Guesthouse. They’ve painted the kitchen, part of the front of the building, the front gate and done many other small projects.
NEW HOUSE is still ready and waiting. Haven’t even been to it although in theory I was going to move in this past weekend. I’ve been in the school house for over 3 months and it feels like home. But definitely will be out of here before the kids arrive. Hopefully I’ll be moved in and quasi-set-up in order to have an small Open House/House Warming on New Year’s Day.
Hope all of you had a happy holiday. It was rather uneventful here in Pai, which was fine with me. Although there was a lovely dinner for guests (and a couple of friends like me) on Sunday evening.